Nothing is more frustrating than discovering you’ve been duped and your hard-earned money is now in the hands of unscrupulous con artists. Scammers utilize a variety of devious methods to obtain your personal information. Once they have your identity, they can use it to commit fraud, such as using your credit card or opening a bank account. Consumers and businesses who are purchasing or selling items and services are targets for scammers. Not all transactions are legal. By posing as potential mates, scammers prey on those looking for love connections, often through dating services, apps, or social media. They use emotional manipulation to persuade you to donate money, gifts, or personal information.
Scammers pose as legitimate charities and solicit donations or contact you claiming to need funds following natural disasters or important events. If you’re looking for a quick way to make money, beware: scammers have created a plethora of phony money-making possibilities in order to take advantage of your enthusiasm and steal your money. Jobs and employment scams entice you to part with your money by promising you a “guaranteed” means to generate quick cash or a high-paying job with little effort.
Scammers will threaten your life or ‘hijack’ your computer in order to steal your identity or money. Scammers construct convincing and ostensibly genuine reasons to instill false optimism in you about money offers. There are no get-rich-quick schemes, so think twice before giving up your personal information or money. Don’t be swayed by a big win. These con artists aim to dupe you into handing over money or personal information in exchange for a prize from a lottery or competition you never participated.
3 Vicious Scams to Beware of
Scammers can imitate actual charities by creating fake web pages, emails, or phone calls and then asking for money or bank account information. They merely want to steal your money, once again. Do not reply to money demands by email, phone calls, or SMS. If you want to donate to a charity, find out how to contact them, do some research, and make sure they are legitimate and will receive your funds.
Scammers may prey on your emotions by claiming to be helping sick children. False charity takes many different forms. Money collectors may come up to you on the street or knock on your house. Scammers may even create fake charity websites. Some con artists will contact you or send you an email requesting a donation.
Check the legitimacy of the site before making a gift. Look for the letter ‘HTTPS’ in the site’s URL to signify that any information you give will be safe and secure. Check the domain name as well (anything before the .com or .org). Make sure the website address is charityname.org or charityname.org.au rather than charitynametherealdeal.org. Misspellings, fuzziness, and low-resolution graphics and logos can all be signs of a phony website.
Online Dating Scams
Scams involving dating and romance are also widespread. Scammers form an online love relationship with people over the course of weeks, months, or even years. They profess to be in love (typically very early in the relationship) and express a strong desire to communicate with the person, frequently calling, emailing, and messaging them. They lavish praise and attention on the individual, as well as gifts on occasion.
Dating fraudsters frequently claim to be from another country or to be Australians who are on the move. There are numerous reasons why you may not be able to meet in person. They could play on your emotions to get you to hand up money. They may claim that they require surgery or that they wish to see you but that they are unable to do so due to a lack of funds. They may also request that you purchase products or services for them or that you send goods to a different address. This is almost always illegal and can be quite dangerous.
These partnerships appear to be genuine, but the scammers are engaging in the same phony relationship with a large number of people at the same time. They use each individual to steal their money or to commit other crimes such as money laundering.
Scams involving investments sometimes offer large payments, rapid cash, or guaranteed profits. Always be wary of investment possibilities that offer a large return with little or no risk — if it seems too good to be true, it most likely is, and it’s a scam. Australians are the ones who lose the most money to investment frauds. They can be difficult to notice. Therefore always obtain independent legal or financial advice from an ASIC-registered financial professional before investing.